Code - Game Design - Music

Soften, Soothe, Allow


Soften, Soothe, Allow is an interactive guided meditation simulation, designed to provide an experience that helps the player deal with difficult emotions.

Featured at Contours 2017 games exhibition as part of the Melbourne Freeplay Festival of Independent Games



Tools: Unity, C#, PureData, Heavy

Platform: PC/Mac

My Responsibilities: Project Lead, Game Design, Code, Music, Audio

Team Size: 3 - UI/Title design by Jair mcBain, Meditation script/voice acting by Jessica westfold

Available: <Here>

Soften, Soothe, Allow is an exploration of games as a means to improve player well-being. To this end, the game provides the player with a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy guided meditation task and encourages engagement through the use of a simple breathing mechanic. Procedural generation of both music and landscape are utilised to create a calming experience that further assists in the engagement of the meditation task.

Design Goals

  • Create an experience that improves player wellbeing

  • Incorporate interaction that helps the player stay engaged with the guided meditation

  • Design a generative music system that provides a unique musical soundscape with each playthrough

  • Use procedurally generated and positioned meshes to create a constantly changing environment

  • Complete within 1 month

Coding Challenges

  • Creating a procedurally generated music system that creates enough variation to maintain interest while being simple enough to not distract the player from the core experience

  • Learning how to code and implement procedurally generated 3D meshes of mushrooms and flowers with customisable parameters

  • procedurally placing generated meshes on world tiles

  • Using shaders and other code-based visual effects for both aesthetic design and to hide the process of procedural terrain and object placement

  • Using shaders to simulate wind motion by mutating flower meshes

Design Challenges

  • Creating interaction mechanics that help the player stay engaged with the guided meditation while being simple enough as to not distract from the experience

  • Handling scope given a limited development time

  • Balancing the level of player autonomy to encourage focus on the meditation task

  • Designing an experience that players find useful for the purpose of dealing with difficult emotions